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Author Topic: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)  (Read 8206 times)

taptap

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dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« on: February 15, 2015, 06:35:28 am »

Premise of this thread are childcare schemes that do not put your little ones at risk and do not need permanent oversight, but let them enjoy themselves, keep them safe from snatchers and (cross-)train them nonetheless. For child endangerment please consult other threads. My observations are based on 40.19.

1) Observer training

skill trained: observer, attributes trained: focus, intuition, spatial sense

This works very well, hardly requiring further comment. Done best with an already experienced squad (more sparring) not fresh recruits. Gawkers in an overlapping barracks / meeting area can reach >legendary in less than a year and max out the attributes trained with ease. This combines well with 2).

2) Debating club

skills trained: various social, attributes trained: empathy, social awareness, linguistic ability

This happens by itself, keep social areas small and limited and dwarf density high. It has been massively nerfed in recent editions, and conversationalist increases slower than biter since the change, even in long term forts (my debating club champion is expert in the 40th year). Idling + partying in confined spaces is, however, still enough to slowly increase empathy and similar attributes.

3) Swimming school

"drowning is the leading cause of injury death among children aged 1-4 years" (No, this shouldn't be true in a dwarven fortress, but it is in the U.S.)

skill trained: swimming, attributes trained: agility, strength, endurance, kin. sense, spatial sense, willpower

Swimming is one of the skills that seems the most useful in terms of attributes trained, however, all attributes involved are easily trained in military training as adults. Swimming skill itself is quite useful.

A design that works with children without micromanagement is the one by jcnorris00 (http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=116437.0). It works nicely with a statue instead of a deconstructing job, a meeting zone arrangement would probably reduce cancellation spam (all the parties are cancelled quickly). (The same design could be a good way to do military swim training in a "pool barracks" inactive squad members go to to do individual training.) Due to the setup of my fortress, distances to the aquifer site are long (80 z-levels up) which slows training down. Another peculiarity in my swimming school is I removed a few aquifer tiles and exchanged them with wooden blocks to have less water produced (and trying to engineer a water flow that tends to push learners toward the ramp leading out of the water) slowing it down further. The scheme I have appears to give children about 60 xp per season on average, which is very slow, jcnorris had better results though.

The statue instead of wall to deconstruct leads to more dwarves (+ children) arriving for parties in the area. However, dwarves can be pushed into the statue, where they will be shortly underwater and only free themselves once the pump starts again. (Be sure to maintain your power source so it doesn't fall inactive in this moment.) A meeting zone setup should be even safer.

For dwarves that already can swim it should be possible to organise swimming courses on similar premises (statue or weapon rack to draw them), but with a longer escape route requiring actual swimming, not reducing the number of aquifer tiles present should help as well. Minecart aided swimming appears to be way more effective for adults for those involved, but sadly is no option for kids.

4) Berries, berries...

skill trained: grower, attributes trained: agility, strength, endurance, kin. sense

Apart from being a valuable skill, there is a considerable overlap with the attributes trained in swimming. And who wouldn't love some free strawberries?

My idea would be an isolated burrow with an experienced grower setting up LARGE fields, with a LOT of children around. With harvesting season, the single grower will not be able to harvest all and the children will do a lot of the harvesting. (Just having children hang around normal growers and normal agriculture only gives mediocre results in my experience.) I didn't manage to do this yet, since I lack seeds for the overground plants, that would grow in my biome. (And it really shouldn't interfere with normal, underground agriculture for seeds, plant stockpiles etc.)

Reelya

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2015, 06:48:34 am »

if you want to force the kids to harvest all the berries, you can try put the grower in a burrow which does not include the stockpile. Without access to a place to put them I'm guessing he won't try and harvest them.

Assign a brewer to turn the stockpiled berries into alcohol to keep seeds coming.

Larix

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #2 on: February 15, 2015, 07:17:58 am »

Sprogs in my forts only get incidental training - a bit of observer, very little conversation and a bit of planting. I plan on working on attributes by drafting them to the military for a year or two once they're grown up.

Swimming training certainly seems like a good thing to train during childhood; less risk of drowning and several useful attributes trained at a notable rate. 4-6 water depth should enable swimming without risk of drowning, right? Hmmmmm...

To the best of my knowledge, harvesting is done automatically once plants are ripe, regardless of stockpile space. If there's no space, harvesters will pull out the plant anyway and leave it in the field. A single adult planter burrowed with a bunch of kids should still work decently and would only get little of the harvesting experience. Excluding the adult completely would be tricky - perhaps you could give them a military schedule to stand guard one month per season, hopefully so that crops ripen during the adult's month of military duty.
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taptap

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #3 on: February 15, 2015, 09:06:35 am »

I won't test the farm arrangement anytime soon, although I am busy building greenhouses, my main fort is an evil desert embark where I lack the biome-appropriate seeds (civ only brought biome-inappropriate plants) unless random watering yields some usable plants quickly it will take time.

Swimming training certainly seems like a good thing to train during childhood; less risk of drowning and several useful attributes trained at a notable rate. 4-6 water depth should enable swimming without risk of drowning, right? Hmmmmm...

Swimming, yes it should. However, they won't willingly go into 4-6 deep water. If you want a safe, passive training arrangement (without micro and permanent oversight), it isn't all that trivial. (Bringing the amount of water into a pool and not letting them out would be easier.) Apart from jcnorris scheme I am trying to make a "wave pool" arrangement, that is passable normally but regularly produces waves up to 5-6 with waterflow through grates connected via u-bend to a low and a high reservoir.


Insert_Gnome_Here

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #4 on: February 15, 2015, 01:30:18 pm »

Its a shame kids don't use minecarts.

You could have an automated wave machine where pumpers change the amount of water, getting them attributes too.
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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #5 on: February 15, 2015, 03:22:46 pm »

You could also do a super compact barracks over a super compact meeting zone, abd have your wrestlers train there. That way, when sparring, the wrestlers will occasionally throw each other, whacjing into bystanders and teaching them some dodging skill, wih no appreciable risk of injury.
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"is it harmful for my dwarves ? I bet it is"
Always a safe default assumption in this game 

taptap

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2015, 10:04:43 am »

You could also do a super compact barracks over a super compact meeting zone, abd have your wrestlers train there. That way, when sparring, the wrestlers will occasionally throw each other, whacjing into bystanders and teaching them some dodging skill, wih no appreciable risk of injury.

I kind of have this already for the observer training (whole fortress population is legendary in observer) and they get a few meagre xp in dodging and wrestling this way as well, but it isn't worth it for wrestling and dodging (not enough to get even novice in 11 years).

Swimming: likely something traditional like this is the better scheme, even with a security mechanism that only opens the second door when the first door is closed, this should be easier and more effective than any of the passive training schemes I can come up with. Why does this look like a fluid logic cell?

Code: [Select]
≈ ....+Ω@  : top view, + is door, Ω is statue. @ is dwarf, can be drained with door below through a floor grate.
 +

A proper wave pool would be much cooler.

taptap

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2015, 04:36:32 am »

Different swimming schemes.

1) aquifer kiddie pool (jcnorris)

- works passively without oversight (as long as the power source is stable, if by reactor maintenance against water losses required) in statue variant
- somewhat slow (more so in the nerfed version I installed)

variants: a) deconstruction job doesn't work for kids anymore, b) statue works fine although slow, c) meeting area may be better (watching it closely spooked me, i feared accidents)

2) meditative swimming (aka standing in water)

- safe when properly set up
- efficient (100-130 xp per day)
- micromanagement hell

3) minecart aided swimming

- quite safe
- possible problems for mother+baby (http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=148035.0)
- works passively
- not available for kids as it requires vehicle riding
- very uneven skill gain

( staalo's dodge-me-trap-bridge with a pool around it, is reportedly working as well, but no spikes is a requirement for this thread. )
« Last Edit: February 20, 2015, 05:14:58 pm by taptap »
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wierd

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2015, 07:46:34 am »

Kiddie pools?

Do it the easy way.  Make a meeting area that they can never reach (until they can swim). Something like this:

You have a water source, and a water drain, connected by a 3 tile wide (or wider) hallway.  Water flows down the hallway out of the water source, and into the drain.  This could be a simple as water entering via a filtered brook/river tile and off the map through fortifications, but the water cannot be pressurized. If you use a river as the water source, use some diagonal flow pressure eliminators to normalize the pressure before letting it into the hallway.  Once water starts entering the drain, it cannot "back up" to allow the flow to reach 7/7, so the tiles near the drain will stay pretty close to 1/7, and it will graduate deeper toward the water source up the hallway, and the places where it is shallow and where it is deep will remain fairly constant after that.

Kid's barracks are situated above this water filled causeway on the 1/7 side. The meeting area is also above the causeway someplace in the 3/7 to 4/7 depth section.  Both rooms are in the Z level higher up, reachable by ramps that descend into the wall of the causeway.

Littlebeards decide that they want to go chill out in the meeting area for their burrow, so they leave the barracks/work areas, and enter the causeway. Pathing still operates because the water depth is not impassible. They enter the hall, and walk in the progressively deeper water. Poor swimmers are pushed back toward the shallow end by the slow flow of the water heading towards the drain. If they tire, the current pushes them into 2/7 water, where they can stand up before they drown.

The kids that make it to the meeting room will have sufficiently high swimming skill that they can navigate 4/7 water. Swimmer skill will continue to increase, because all pathing in and out of the meeting area requires it. 
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Gigaz

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2015, 03:37:37 pm »

I usually keep my dwarven children in a burrow that does not include the booze stockpile or the stills, so they have to drink well water. As they don't work, I don't care about them being slow.
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taptap

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2015, 02:30:17 am »

Do it the easy way.  Make a meeting area that they can never reach (until they can swim).

Do they even enter the corridor when the target is not reachable? Apparently you use this, but this is somewhat counterintuitive to my previous understanding of pathing. Can you tell a little more about how effective it is?

wierd

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2015, 01:23:53 pm »

Water deeper than 4/7 is considered "Dangerous terrain", but shallower than this is considered pathable by the pathing AI. Without good swimming skill, the current will push the kids back down the hallway to the 3/7 depth water, where their feet touch the ground again.  They will move back and forth in the hallway, trying to get to the meeting area, and getting swept back again until their swimming skill raises, and they can navigate the 4/7 depth water section.

Again, water cannot be pressurized. It has to be a "Slow drain" kind of flow without any pressure. Tapping into the SIDE of an aquifer section, then draining it off the map would be ideal.

The idea is to put the upramp in the area where the 4/7 and 3/7 meet. This way the path is intermittent. Dwarven children will compute a path to the meeting area when the path is solidly 3/7, but the random sloshing of the 4/7 moving downstream will block the path. This is what pushes them back downstream, forcing them to recompute the path. This is why you want a wider hallway than 2 tiles wide. You want the water to slosh around real good in there.  The section between solid 4/7 and solid 3/7 is usually around 5 tiles wide, where you have 4/7 tiles sloshing around. That's where you want the upramp to the meeting area.
« Last Edit: February 19, 2015, 01:29:22 pm by wierd »
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wierd

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #12 on: February 19, 2015, 01:39:29 pm »

As for how effective it is--

If they are hauling something (and are thus slow moving), it blocks them with greater than 80% efficiency, on average. They still attempt to path upstream after they get pushed back, because if the hallway is wide enough, there are diagonal paths between the 4/7 water sloshes that they could reach the upramp to get up there, but these areas move around faster than they do, causing them to stay stuck in the hallway until they can navigate a 4/7 slosh.

If they are not hauling something, my anectdotal experience is that it is someplace in the 60% effectiveness at blocking them from getting to the meeting area. It gets them repeatedly though, because they have to path back down the hallway to get to their beds to sleep, then when they want to idle some more, they have to use the hallway again.

If you coupled this with "No, you have to drink gross well water, and you will LIKE IT!" as suggested above, this should slow them down, making them more likely to be caught in the sloshing.
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taptap

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #13 on: February 19, 2015, 03:40:52 pm »

As for how effective it is--

Interesting, but this is really sensitive of having the right mix of water height and with flowing water. Wouldn't this work with a trench with mainly 3/7 and say 20% 4/7? Say (similar to the design of staalo's facility without the spikes) in a cross shape with pathable, but interrupting pool in the center, divided living zones outside?

Running my nerfed version (accident free) of the aquifer kiddie pool by jcnorris for a while most kids now can swim somewhat, although a week meditative swimming retreat would train it to the same level or higher. Useful for the swimming, but not effective crosstraining. I don't dare run the proposed meeting zone variant of the aquifer pool after I rescued dwarves twice during safety testing.

I notice all my kids have at least some climbing xp, miniscule but more than adults. Suspect it comes from the kiddie pool as well.

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Re: dwarven childcare (loving + peaceful)
« Reply #14 on: February 19, 2015, 11:53:24 pm »

You can try it but you may get cancellation spam, or dangerous terrain spam.

I like my way better, because I can utilize the flow in many different ways to further automate happiness generation. For instance, I can put some watertwheels over the 4/7 and deeper sections of the hallway, and use them to drive mist generators (The deep side being conveniently close to the meeting hall), and I can put wells over it, ensuring clean water is always available and will never be dry. (Blood and child filth get washed up against the walls downstream from there, ensuring contaminant free. A small channeled out pit under the well will trap the mud. (Basically, where the bucket drops into the flooded hallway, just channel down that spot so it is 4/7 on top of 7/7 below. The mud gets stuck deeper down, and the water there wont have mud in it.)

The pathing interruptions/recomputations are going to murder your FPS anyway, but this is necessary to get effective swimming training. The added hit of flowing water I just buck up and take like a man.
« Last Edit: February 20, 2015, 12:20:56 am by wierd »
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